This is a collection of ideas that I've discussed with friends. I believe intelligent human-like life is extremely rare, and I make some arguments to support that claim. If we did encounter another technological species, I think it would be psychologically similar to us, but probably bear no physical resemblance.
In 1980, I wrote a LISP interpreter for the VAX. It was quite fast and had some novel ideas, but was never used. It did, however, get me an interview at Bell Telephone Laboratories, after John Reiser saw the code.
Metal Lunch - Whole Earth Review, January, 1985
I wrote this in an email and sent it around to a few friends, just an odd spontaneous little piece. About a year later, someone showed me an issue of Whole Earth Review, and there it was! One of my friends, Paul Rubin, admitted he had submitted it to them without telling me.
I did graduate work in physics at Caltech from 1978 to 1981. I should have realized that computers were my true love, but I don't regret the three years I spent there. I was fortunate to interact with three great men, Richard Feynman, Max Delbruck, and Edward Stone. Here are a few brief paragraphs about some experiences with Feynman.
I was intrigued for a while with Literary Theory, but no one ever successfully explained deconstruction to me. Foucault's ideas seemed interesting and a little more practically important.